We're Not In Denial JP/atten: Kashara/K'ssyn


OOC: Backdated to before boys see the eggs

Kashara smoothed down her dress as she stopped in front of the weyr door. The dress wasn’t Gather fancy, but she was definitely dressed up. Not that it took much compared to the Candidate uniform she had to wear most of the time.

Satisfied, she knocked on the door and waited for K’ssyn to answer the door. Inwardly she told herself there was nothing wrong with having dinner with the AWLM. They weren’t sneaking around, they were just friends. And the AWLM could talk to her about what it was like being a Weyrling. Sure. As if she’d never had the talk before.

Tiscarth poked his head through the divider between his wallow area and K’ssyn’s weyr.  <<You like her.>>  The brown watched as his rider fidgeted and traded out one tunic for another.  

>>She’s a nice girl.  What’s not to like?<< he said, but pointedly ignoring the inference the dragon had made.

<<You know better than to think I can’t tell.>>  There was a pause.  <<Be careful.>>

>>Since when have you been so interested?<< K’ssyn said, settling on one tunic that was nice, but not too nice, and cut just so to highlight his muscle tone rather than any flaws in his physique, and the gray color did well to tone down the red in his skin.  Blast this Arolos sun!

The knock at the door made him quickly throw the discarded tunic from earlier in a drawer, and he swept his hands through his hair one last time.  Tiscarth, for his part, said nothing, and withdrew into his wallow.

K’ssyn answered the door, and the sight of Kashara, in a dress, made him smile slightly despite himself.  Rowan would have teased him...

Kashara returned the smile. She did a half curtsey. “I’m ready for dinner, sir,” she teased. No, she wasn’t flirting, honest. She’d never flirt with an AWLM. Nope. Not that she’d ever been that good at flirting.

Her eyes wandered over him and couldn’t help notice the muscles that came from turns of dragon riding. The clothes he’d chosen did a good job of highlighting them. Not that she was staring at those. There was a lot of things she was not doing.

He gave a slight incline of his head at her curtsey.  “Well, Weyrwoman’s daughter Kashara,” he lost no time in responding to her teasing ‘sir’ comment, “please come inside.”  He held the door wide for her, while he took her all in.  He wasn’t the kind to stare, and his gaze was much more casual than that.  But it didn’t keep him from appreciating what he saw in her.

“You look lovely,” he said once the door was closed behind her.  

Kashara blushed and then mentally kicked herself. She wasn’t normally one to blush, but something in his comment got to her. She turned her face away as she stepped inside. Maybe he hadn’t had a chance to see the look on her face.

“How are you today?” she asked, reaching back to pet her braid nervously. At least she didn’t tug on it the way her mother did when she was really stressed or pissed.

“I enjoy my rest days.  Tiscarth and I spent some time out by the water, letting him relax.  We both enjoy teaching, but it’s good to have time to ourselves as well.  And you?” he asked as they moved into his weyr.  Here, it was easier to see that he’d grown up as a Caravanner.  The decor was certainly toned down compared to the wagons he’d grown up in, but the colors were bold and the items in it ranged from all over Pern.  It wasn’t cluttered, but it wasn’t sparse in its decor either.  

“Would you like some wine?” he asked.  “I have a few Northern varieties if you’d like…”

She nodded as she took in her surroundings. She’d never been in an AWLM’s weyr before. Of course, in the end AWLMs were just people, so really she’d never been in his weyr before. A couple of things on the shelves seemed interesting, but she turned back to him. “A red, if you have one. Otherwise, whatever you prefer.” 

K’ssyn nodded, motioning to a small table with two chairs, where plates were laid out and covered to keep their contents warm.  Wine glasses were already on the table as well, and while it wasn’t an intricate set up, it was obviously not thrown together hastily either.  He moved to hold out the chair for her while she sat, before going and getting a bottle of Benden red.  It wasn’t the nicest vintage ever, but it was also the best he had.  If not now, then when?

“The good thing about a trader family is that we always had a variety of wines and foods.  I grew up eating and drinking every variety of food from every little Northern hold.  I’m still not used to the Southern wines yet…” he said, as he poured her some of the red.

“Are you used to the South in general yet?” Kashara asked as she lifted her glass and took a sip. It was good. She took a longer sip then gestured at the display of food. “It all smells wonderful. Did you have to bribe the kitchen staff?”

“There are things in the South that make it worth getting used to,” he said, his eyes focused on her.  “But it takes time.  The heat and the sun are hard on a Northerner.”  He shifted his gaze to follow hers to the food.  “Titles have their privileges.  Apparently the kitchen staff here like AWLMs…”

“You telling me you didn’t charm anyone for any of this?” Kashara asked, gesturing to the plates and grinning. “If there turns out to be dessert here, then I won’t believe you got away with it without conning some blushing staffer.” She really hoped there was dessert there, whether he had to flirt his way for it or not.

K’synn raised an eyebrow.  “Perhaps not everything is from these kitchens,” he added enigmatically.  “Dragons can go anywhere after all…” There were so many wonderful little holds in the North that made amazing foods.  He’d had to go up earlier that day anyways in service of his Blood Debt.  It hadn’t been difficult to stop by and say hello to old friends, one of whom, practically like a nanna to half the cothold, to give him some of her little cakes.

“You’re a talented one, sir,” Kashara teased as she cut off a bite of food and lifted it delicately to her lips. She made a happy noise as she ate the piece. “I need more friends that spoil me like this. Being the Weyrwoman’s daughter doesn’t get me as much extra treatment as it used to.”

“How is that possible?” K’synn asked referring to her parentage, watching the pleasure of the food cross her face.  It pleased him that she was enjoying what he’d put together for her.  Because while he had gotten a few things from this kitchen, so aspects were from other places.  The trip north had been an opportunity to pick up a few things.  “Try this,” he said pointing to one of the dishes off to the side.

Kashara turned to take a bite of the dish. She made another happy noise and piled more of the dish onto her plate. “It’s wonderful. And, okay, I do get some extra treatment than others, but not as much as I used to. Mom wants me to try to stand on my own.”

“That one came from a little old woman who’s made the thing the same way ever since I can remember.  Refuses to change a thing about it, which is fine since it’s delicious,” he added.  He watched her, listening as she talked.  “What was it like growing up with a goldrider as a mother?”

“Well it’s very good,” Kashara said, taking another bite. She was silent a moment after swallowing then said, “I don’t know how much it was just her and how much it was her being a goldrider and then Weyrwoman. My mom doted on me and Sarati. Less so on Rassia. My brothers may as well not exist. For some reason she just didn’t have an interest in being part of their life.

She shrugged. “Sarati and I got the best of the best. Good clothes. Good food. We were paraded around. In more recent turns she’s been a bit hands off again, which I have mixed feelings about.”

K’synn finished his plate and moved to refill it.  Caravans ate family style, which was more of what he was used to then the Weyr’s buffet style.  Weyrlife still felt strange to him sometimes, and especially now that he was seeing his family more than he used to.  Lisilia in particular was fond of popping into the Weyr unannounced and showing up at his weyr.  He suspected she was hoping to walk in on something for the sheer irritation it would cause, his younger sister being a bit annoying that way.  Hopefully, she didn’t choose this evening.

“Why do you think she’s changed?  And why did she ignore your brothers?” he asked after she’d finished.  

Kashara shrugged. “We’re older now. She has other things that are important. Again, we’re still spoiled to some extent, but not as much. And as for my brothers...I think she just likes girls better. I don’t know. It’s hard to explain my mom.”

K’synn nodded.  “And I won’t pretend to understand goldriders.  There weren’t any in Tiscarth’s Clutch, and I’ve not really had reason to get to know any.”  Tiscarth wasn’t one to participate in gold flights, and K’synn wasn’t the type of guy to seek out friendships with the Weyrleadership.  “Growing up in my family, there weren’t too many distinctions between any of us brats in the Caravan.  Minus my eldest brother learning to take it over eventually, we all just pulled our own weight.  I suppose some of the siblings got off a bit lighter after mischief, but not by much.” 

“There are a lot more expectations when you’re the daughter of a gold rider,” Kashara said. “Not just from my mom, but because people expect that one of us will Impress a gold. Or at least that we’ll all be riders. I want to be a rider, but it’s a bit much sometimes. I like that I can just be me with you.”

K’synn shrugged.  “I like just you.  And who else would you be?”  He went back to eating for a moment, just letting the moments just be between them without forcing it.  If he was one of his brothers, he would have assuredly had some charming line for her, some charismatic smile and charm to lay on thick and heavy.  If he was one of his brothers, he’d be planning on how to get that dress off of her before the night was over.  But he wasn’t, and instead, he was focused on her with no expectations.  “I was the oddball of my pack of siblings.  I’ve always been the more reserved, less likely to get into trouble, and more likely to be ensuring the others didn’t get into it.  They always pressured me to be more like them.  But I am not, and I am me.” 

“I like you, too.” There she wasn’t blushing, was she? She was just friends with this AWLM, right? To be anything more would be dangerous, and yet she liked him. A lot. She told herself that it meant nothing. She played with her food, trying not to look too awkward. She tried to drift to being a good girl. “How’s being an AWLM?”

“I’ve always been a good teacher.  And definitely the goodie of my sibling group.  Certainly more patient with all of their antics than they would have been or were.  Even in our own weyrlinghood, Tiscarth and I helped our Clutchsibs.  We both enjoy teaching, in helping others.  Being an AWLM is just an extension of that, of helping ensure that future wingmates are more prepared.  And having a young dragon is hard and trying.  Tiscarth is good with them.”

“I’m glad it fits you so well,” Kashara said. “With a large class incoming.” Including possibly her. Best not to think too hard on it. “What do you think of the two goldriders who will start up?”

K’synn gave a small smile.  “I think I am glad not to be WLM Ko’ssen.  Even if their riders are perfectly well-behaved, there is no way that two golds don’t cause trouble.”  Even if Kashara could be one of them, a thought that was accompanied by both a desire and a sinking feeling, all in one.  “There are plenty of issues that come up in a normal weyrlinghood.  Look at your journeyman, Ambrelli.  Plenty of issues there despite her being accomplished in her craft.”

“She was never meant to Impress, though,” Kashara pointed out. “You can’t stop Stands Impressions, but they can mess things up. I hope that there are no Stands Impressions this go around. That would only be added trouble.” She finished her last bite. “That was really good.”